Friday, 24 October 2014

Have You Checked Yourself Lately? RIP Nathan Cirillo.



Accompanied by Strength, Courage and Wisdom by India Arie.

Hello All!

With all that has been happening in Ottawa as of late (and really all that has been happening around this world) - the country mourning the death of one of our young soldiers who's life was taken by a senseless act of violence - it has made me really reflect inward and think about our mortality. Our lives can be taken at any second as we saw with Cpl. Nathan Cirillo. He was an unarmed guard, just doing his job, not knowing what his fate would be that afternoon. There is no knowing what will happen when you wake up in the morning, so we need to be grateful for all that we have each day.




To check myself during these uncertain times, I often ask - Am I being as kind as I can be to others? Am I being kind enough to myself? Am I challenging my fears and living the life I've always dreamed of living? Am I wasting time and energy on things that don't really matter in the grand scheme of things? Am I taking care of myself properly? Did I say I love you to the people that matter the most in my world? Am I taking for granted all the awesome people in my life? Did I say sorry to the people I've hurt or allowed myself to forgive the people who hurt me? Am I participating in things that make me happy? Am I HAPPY?? Am I doing enough to help others? I can certainly answer no to a bunch of these questions and am doing my best to be less anxious, lend a helping hand to others, live a more present and happy life. We are all connected in this world and the energy we give out directly affects everyone around us, so let us try and turn our energy around so we can all help each other thrive.

We have been given this body and spirit to learn, grow, and live the best life possible. I want to make sure I soak in all the wonderful moments that life brings me. I want to make sure I explore this glorious world as much and as often as I can, enjoying the simplest of things to enjoying world travels! I want to love wholeheartedly and feel contentment and happiness. I want to make people feel happy as well! I have been awarded a life in a country that isn't directly terrorized daily by war and mass destruction. I am a proud Canadian. I have been awarded a life with the ability to choose anything I want to do instead of the other way around, which is scary and liberating at the same time. So many choices are out there and I'm lucky to be able to make those choices. Yes there is still crime, yes there are still terrorist threats and bombs in our countries history, yes we still have to make smart choices and protect ourselves, but we also have so much freedom. It is hard to process and relate to the state of peoples lives in war torn countries and third world developments. Having to constantly live in fear of attacks and abductions, death, malnourishment, and poverty. It's upsetting that we are a world that has this even existing and I need to be more aware of all that goes on outside of my little bubble. Acts of terror and destruction are a choice of our society and it is scary and sad that we have become immune to this type of behaviour in some regard. We as a world can make different choices but we choose to go to war and to kill our own species. And for what? For reasons that can be talked about over killed about. I am not one to watch the news as there is too much negativity being splashed across its broadcasts and I hope one day this can turn around. I hope one day the WHOLE world can feel peace. We need to come together everyday as we do when situations like the Ottawa attack comes around. I suppose we need polarity in this world to really appreciate the positives that happen in our lives. 


Sending my love and hugs out to this world. RIP Nathan Cirillo. Thank you for serving our country with a big smile and tons of pride. Enjoy your weekend everyone! 

Love,
Lovely Lianne xoxoxox




Saturday, 28 June 2014

Have You Ever Tried Living in The Present??



Accompanied by "Live Like You Were Dying" by Tim McGraw.

Heeeeey!!!

Happy long weekend everyone!!!! I had the most glorious day so far and feel totally inspired to write so that's what I'm doing!

What a great morning I've had today! Coffee and breakfast in hand, I took a wonderful walk to the lake to read the rest of my book and soak in this beautiful weather. This past week I've been feeling quite anxious and kind of sad so the sun did me some good. I chatted with a few girlfriends of mine who made me swell with pride seeing how they've turned their lives around for the better and who are now living their passions. It has been really inspiring to see and I feel so much happiness for them.
   
After parking myself on a bench by the water and settling in, I went on to finish this book I've been reading called When Things Fall Apart by Pema Chodron (based on Buddhist teachings). I felt like I was parting with a great friend when the last page was read.  If you are looking for a book that provides a down to earth, no bullshit perspective about meditation and how to live a fulfilling, glorious life, then this book is for you! For me, it brought about so many perspectives about life that made so much sense and really resonated within my body. It calls you out on so many things you do in your daily existence that you may not want to admit to yourself or are maybe not even aware of, but are nor right or wrong things to do. It's a book about how to live in the present and how to break from our old habitual patterns and embrace all parts of ourselves. It made me start to appreciate and absorb the present moment because that's all we have right now! I've known this way of life in theory and you always hear the statement LIVE IN THE PRESENT, in which I would answer "Yes of course!" but that statement never truly clicked until now. The future is not here yet people! What we do in each present moment creates what will happen in our future. We have a choice in each moment whether it's joyful or not, to turn our life around in the way we want. There is no guarantee that we will wake up tomorrow, so embracing our lives moment by moment and feeling gratitude for all that comes to us in those moments, both good and challenging, is how we can live a truly happy and fulfilled life.  I've honestly started to understand how precious life really is and how much time I seem to waste because "there's always tomorrow to do it". We don't have a long time on earth and our days here are to be lived to the fullest - which can mean doing the most simplest things. How many of us are aware of the sound of the wind blowing through our hair and around our ears? How many of us are aware of the birds chirping in the trees? The feeling of the sun or rain on our skin? How many of us really truly absorb the cars driving past us? The people passing us on the sidewalks? The beauty of nature and of life in general? The feeling of our feet walking along the grass or sidewalks? The smell of the cedar path? The smell of the garbage in Toronto or someone's natural scent?  Do you truly listen to someone when they are talking or are you in your own head waiting to talk about yourself or thinking about your grocery list or how great the sex was last night? We are all guilty of being up in the clouds or rushing around not paying attention to the life that is around us.  Not paying attention to the people around us. Not paying attention to life at all. How many of us are so debilitated by our own fears and thoughts that we don't take risks or live the lives we want? We live this safe existence to avoid being hurt, or embarrassed or seen as a failure. How many of us run away from love to avoid risking a broken heart or awkward silence or rejection or even falling in love?? We miss out on so much when we let ourselves get in the way. We are creating these outcomes! It's quite ridiculous when you really think about it.

Thinking that we can put things off, or that there are better things out there instead of what is right in front of us right now won't get us anywhere enjoyable. Every moment that we encounter are wondrous moments that need to be cherished and soaked in because those senses and the chance to live those experiences can be gone in seconds. It's a gift that we wake up every day breathing, feeling tired, feeling cranky, feeling amazing! There is so much of life that we take for granted. We bombard ourselves with all these distractions to escape our lives which is kind of crazy when you think about it! Why do we want to run away instead of deal with ourselves? Why do we create so much anxiety within ourselves?? Social media, our phones, music, drugs, alcohol, food, people, events - all these distractions can keep us out of the present and keep us from really feeling what is going on inside us and around us. Using these outlets to escape from being uncomfortable inside or feeling that anxiety and fear only put a temporary band-aid on the issues at hand. With these outlets we don't have to really feel what we are feeling right then and there. We are providing ourselves with a temporary fix, but we can't escape ourselves for very long. Embracing our fears, embracing our anxiety, embracing our joys, embracing our sadness, embracing our triumphs, embracing the unknown, embracing our discomfort with anything we feel uncomfortable with - silence, the idea of commitment, rejection, death, connection, traffic, life in general - is how we will truly live and get past these feelings.  Instead of trying to run away from them or fix them we need to have courage and face these feelings, staying in that present moment until the emotions/feelings pass. We can then truly observe our patterns and ourselves in an honest way, with compassion, kindness and no shame or guilt. We can accept that we are not these perfect beings, and that these imperfections are actually life's lessons that help us develop and move forward in life in a different way. Life's shitty situations can teach us a lesson in patience, or surrendering. Sometimes we just don't know what to do when presented with a situation beyond our control. Trust and faith within that insecure, shaky space is necessary. Living in the present and meditating can allow us to detach from the chaos our minds create. It is crazy how much effort is required to slow ourselves down and train ourselves to live this way. I am guilty of living in a twister like state - not truly absorbing what's around me all the time, escaping from my life to avoid the pain - but I am learning to change this around because I love life and I want to make sure I live life to the fullest! Not reacting to life is hard for me! Slowing myself down enough to just feel what I'm feeling, letting it resonate and then respond is a difficult task! BUT it allows for a more stable way of being. So in short....next time you feel uncomfortable, fearful, sad, angry, hurt, happy, content - sit in that moment and stick it out. You may be pleasantly surprised at what happens next :)

I hope everyone enjoys this glorious long weekend. I can't believe it is already July!!!! Where is the time going?!? Looking forward to five whole days off in a row.

Love you long time.

Lovely Lianne XOXOXO

Thursday, 29 May 2014

Have You Ever Lived An Undisciplined Life?


Accompanied by "Better Get To Livin'" by Dolly Parton.

Hey Y'all!

Hope all is well with everyone!! It's been a while since my last blog and it's time to let things out!!! So here it goes!

Throughout the last few months, life has certainly been twisting and turning like crazy in both good and challenging ways. My relationship ended (amicably), I started singing lessons to improve my breathing and vocal range (which has also been serving as an amazing therapy session each week!), have been reading some amazing books that have brought about new ways of thinking and being to the table, met some people that have inspired me to change my life for the better, and have been facing my own truth and trying to be honest with myself. I have been inspired to really start making changes in order for me to really truly enjoy my life and with a purpose. No more running away from myself. It is actually crazy to think of how much we DO run away from ourselves! Running away from pain, fear, anxiety, success, joy - LIFE! We overindulge, work too much, play too much, do anything at all to keep ourselves from sitting and looking at ourselves in a truly honest way - without the facade or act. It can be hard to accept who we are - that we may not be these perfect, nice human beings all the time. That doesn't mean we are bad. It just is what it is at that moment, and honestly once you give up trying to be something you're not, a weight just lifts off your shoulders and you start to surrender.

All information I have known in theory regarding how to live life has started to really click and resonate within my body. The idea and benefits of meditation, the feeling of true self-love, self-acceptance and self-worth, the appreciation and self-care for my body, living a purposeful life - I am truly understanding the importance of all of it and truly understanding what it actually FEELS like for once. I've realized even more now how little I've regarded myself for so long, and how much more I want to work towards living a full, happy life. I don't ever want to just exist in life as it is too precious to just waste away. Life is to be soaked in and experienced. However with that said, in order to really put all those theories continuously into practice and live a CONSCIOUS, happy life, DISCIPLINE is necessary and that is where things become challenging for me as I'm a bit of a free spirit. Being a free spirit, living spontaneously from one moment to the next, has been both a blessing and a curse. One would assume that living freely and spontaneously would feel...well...FREE! Yes, I can certainly feel free at times, but on the flip side there is also a lack of direction and purpose that comes along with that feeling. It's like I'm this bird erratically flying above my life below. It's the one area of my life that has reared it's ugly head continuously waiting for me to get with the program. The more I avoid being disciplined and thinking that change will just occur out of thin air, the longer the issues in my life continue - and I'm not getting any younger! It's not that I can't be disciplined or focused when need be, because when I put my mind to something I can manifest it pretty quickly, however when it comes to certain areas of my own personal growth (like just being), I can't seem to stay on task. When I hear the word discipline, I want to run the other way. Like even when I'm writing the word discipline I can feel the anxiety and resistance creeping up like an unwanted friend saying - "No Lianne...stay here with me and have some fun. Do all that shit later." "UH - OK!" I say. Ugh. It's a constant conflict of interest in my brain. I observe people mastering skills, following through with exercise, eating healthy, meditating and I think god damnit I need to get back on track. How do they do that so well?? Four years ago I maintained a major lifestyle change for four whole months - changing my diet completely, taking vitamins, remedies, eliminating alcohol and caffeine, drinking more water, knitting a scarf (thanks Grandma), and it felt glorious! I was finally taking care of myself, and putting me first. I was living a more balanced, structured, accomplished life, and then it all went to shit again. This experience though has proven that I CAN actually do it, and I just need to start one thing at a time and be more gentle with myself in the process. Scheduling and structuring my day, taking time to meditate (even if it's for two minutes), taking time to rehearse (singing and ukulele), taking time to be out in nature, eliminating all the things I can't eat due to allergies, and exercising more, will be my starting point to change. Doing something everyday consistently will help me feel more accomplished and purposeful.

I have been meeting many people as of late who have really pushed me unknowingly to take a good look at myself again and eliminate the excuses as to why I can't live the life I want. I am the one holding me back. I am the one making the decisions. It takes a large amount of effort to change your life around and I've been working towards doing this. I've been slowly accepting parts of myself over the last few months such as maybe not wanting kids, or maybe never getting married, which has been a hard one to accept as both are such normal societal milestones, especially for a woman. I equated not wanting both of these things with being selfish or not being responsible, but this is just not true. If they both happen down the road then so be it, but I realized it is alright that these are not my priorities. It has certainly taken the pressure and time urgency off my shoulders!!! Perhaps this lack of urgency will help the discipline part as I will feel I can take my time to get to develop my skills. There are so many things I want to experience, and with a more balanced state of mind and being I'll be able to get there a bit easier and more consciously (and appreciate things more). I will have more confidence, a more stable energy, a sense of accomplishment, which will in turn attract what I want in life.

I feel an immense amount gratitude and love to those people and experiences that have helped me along my journey. For those people who have come into my life challenging my thoughts and ways of being, lifting my spirits, giving me hugs, cuddles and kisses, being a shoulder to cry on, being a person to vent to - THANK YOU! Tears of joy sprung in my eyes today thinking of these people and life experiences. Instead of playing victim to everything that has happened to me along the way I really am looking at these things as a blessing and taking responsibility - my lack of discipline included. We grow as people when faced with adversity. Shaking up our perceived reality, looking at new perspectives, accepting others for who they are, listening and connecting with others, loving unconditionally, letting go of the past, living in the moment, will all allow us to soar to new heights and awareness. This does not mean we won't be faced with more challenges along the way, but we will feel more equipped when having to deal with them.

To further add to this though - I have to remember the things I've accomplished in life thus far as well (thanks Heather Watts for this reminder!) as I tend to minimize them. Maybe I haven't become president of a huge company, or found the cure for cancer but they are experiences I'm proud of that I have put my heart and soul into and I need to realize that also matters!! It's the little things in life that can bring us peace and joy.

Thank you to all who have listened. Love you guys!!! Have a great weekend!!!

Love,
Lovely Lianne xoxo


Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Have You Ever Felt Pure Happiness - HAPPY NEW YEAR'S EDITION 2014!!!


Accompanied by "A Life That's Good" - Nashville Cast

Hey All!

It's been a while since I've written last. There has been a lot going on so I apologize. I was scolded recently by a friend for not writing a blog in so long so here it goes Heather!!! For you girl! :)

SO...have you ever felt so happy that tears literally have just sprung out of your eyeballs?? Well people...that is how I have been feeling these last few months and it feels absolutely glorious!!!! I HAVE felt bliss before but not this consistently :) For many years life has been a crazy roller coaster for me, as I've said many times in previous blog posts. Lots of ups and downs and living in limboland, feeling completely lost and rather empty.  There have been so many years of feeling overwhelmed and purposeless, and not really feeling I was contributing much to society. For this past year and especially the last few months, I have felt these feelings disappearing little by little, and have felt that life is finally on track. After listening to this awesome song called "A Life That's Good" I truly started to feel utmost gratitude about life in general. My heart has launched open and this sense of freedom and love has been pouring into my body with such intensity. I often wondered if I would ever feel this joy and contentment in my life, so needless to say, these feelings have made me cry like a little baby numerous times. I made it a mission this past year to really figure out what made me happy, what I could do to help others, and what steps I needed to take to open my heart up to a real relationship again (or maintain healthy relationships with friends and family). How in the hell was this all going to happen?? And how was this to happen in a balanced state that benefitted everyone? I prayed and I wrote, and I talked endlessly, and I meditated, and I over thought, and I prayed some more. I began to analyze the present state of my life and analyzed who I had become. I listened to people's advice, and pick and chose what would work for me at that time. Living life in the moment seemed to help my anxiety and make me feel more content. Slowly releasing the pattern of trying to please everyone all the time certainly made me start to feel happy and more free. Learning to accept my quirks, faults, ADD moments, and myself in general definitely helped me move into the right direction as well. And music made me feel like I had a purpose in life. I became more committed to Whiskey Epiphany (the band I am currently apart of), joined a volunteer organization called Ladybird Sanctuary, an organization that helps animals in need, and this past summer met a boy (who I am currently still in a relationship with), who helped me realize what it feels like to be truly appreciated, respected, and VISIBLE!! The combination of all these things made my heart soar. I have been able to consistently perform and live out my dream of performing and singing. I am venturing into a volunteer opportunity that enables me to combine my love of animals with my desire to be of service to the community. And lastly, I was able to open my eyes up to what a healthy relationship is supposed to feel like. Though there is still a lot to learn and improve upon, I am finally making strides to a more fulfilling life.

LIFE REALLY IS GOOD!!

INTENTIONS FOR THE NEW YEAR:

1) Meditate more and slow down! Take time for myself.
2) Become more committed and involved with the Ladybird Sanctuary, and volunteer opportunities in general.

3) Work hard to promote and line up more performances for Whiskey Epiphany.
4) Improve my singing abilities to help become more confident on stage!
5) Work on my constant struggle of caring too much about what people think!
6) Be kind to my body - eat healthy, exercise regularly and get more sleep!!!
7) Distance myself from things that don't serve me well any longer - toxic people, jobs, life patterns.
8) Travel more.
9) Learn to breathe and think before I react.
10) Learn to become a better leader/manager.
11) Get out into nature more :)
12) Continue to strive to live a life full of love and joy - stress free!

Here is to health, love, and happiness in 2014! I wish everyone the best and hope you all have an amazing year ahead!

Love,
Lovely Lianne xoxo

Monday, 26 August 2013

Have You Ever - Two Years Later!! A THANK YOU NOTE TO ALL! OVER 12,000 VIEWS!


Accompanied by "Gratitude" by Earth, Wind & Fire - "I wanna say Thank Youuu....yeeeah"

Hey All!!!!

SOooooOO...exciting news my friends!!! My little itty bitty blog has reached over 12,000 views which can only mean one thing - I NEED TO WRITE A THANK YOU NOTE TO YOU ALL (and all the random google searchers) cause that's what I do!!!!

Since I started writing this blog, life has definitely had its twists and turns. The whole purpose of me writing as I've mentioned numerous times, was to help people realize that we all go through trials and tribulations in life and to show everyone that we do not have to be ashamed of expressing those experiences. Everyone has their shit to deal with and there is no need to deal with this shit alone. It has been a truly gratifying and humbling experience receiving messages from people who felt they could relate to what I was saying, and have them share their own stories of struggle and joy with me.

I feel like life is starting to change for the better and feel more stable. Life truly is grand. I'm beginning to emerge into a stronger person, with more direction and focus. I'm beginning to shed the unwanted aspects of who I used to be little by little and have begun to live as the person I've always wanted to be. I'm beginning to feel more comfortable in my own skin, but still have some more growing to do in that front. It is still hard for me to reveal some aspects of myself to others as I still worry about what people think about me. I need to infuse a little "I DON'T GIVE A SHIT WHAT YOU THINK" attitude into my life ASAP!!!

I am still learning to find balance in life and to prioritize how I live my life in general. I need to leave room for silence and reflection, and connect with nature and my body again. I need to distance myself from the draining people in my life and focus on the people in my life that lift me up and accept who I am.  I need to leave room for things I enjoy doing rather than fill my time up with things other people want to do. I need to live my truth and be honest about who I am which is a hard thing to do sometimes. We all have said things, and lived in ways we aren't proud of, but it is swallowing our pride, recognizing what we've done, and forgiving ourselves for those moments that will help us move forward and start healing.

I am still learning to live in the moment and be grateful each day for wherever I am and whatever happens to me whether good or bad. It really is our perspective of these tough situations that is the important thing. Instead of letting life get us down when obstacles come our way, we need to see them as learning lessons and be thankful for having these obstacles enter our life. Hardship and struggle allow us to see the beauty and joy in life when the clouds part and things become more clear again.

Although discipline is clearly not my forte (as I don't write as often as I should), I'm hoping to change that and really write more seriously this upcoming year. Fingers crossed!!!

Enjoy the rest of your summers and thank you again to everyone who has commented, been inspired, felt connected to, criticized, and or cared about what I had to say!

Love,
Lovely Lianne XO


Thursday, 20 June 2013

Have You Ever Been to Paddle Royale? Big Brothers and Sisters Toronto 2012 Inaugural Event!



Accompanied by the Men's Final Gold Medal Game at the 2012 Olympics! Just to learn some tips ;)
Hey All!!!

This was an article I wrote for the Big Brothers and Sisters of Toronto inaugural event last year called Paddle Royale. It didn't end up getting published in the magazine for one reason or another so I thought I would put it on my blog as the second annual Paddle Royale is coming up August 22, 2013!! Team registrations are filling up so if you're interested in attending this super fun event, get on it! See link below :)

http://www.bbbstyoungleaders.ca/


On September 13th, 2012, the Big Brothers and Sisters of Toronto (BBBST) Young Leader’s (YL) kicked off their inaugural event, Paddle Royale, at SPiN Toronto in the heart of downtown Toronto. The council, which formed this past year, is comprised of 17 dedicated young professionals between the ages of 20 and 35 who want to make a difference in the city.  Their goals are to raise awareness of the organization with hopes to “recruit new volunteers, fundraise, and spread the word of Big Brothers and Sisters of Toronto”, says co-chair of the YL’s and Big Brother himself, Michael Boynton. Currently there are 250 kids on the waiting list, still needing to be matched with a big brother or sister. 

Whilst taking a year to organize, Paddle Royale, “a glow- in-the-dark (themed) ping-pong party” (combining a glow-in-the-dark party with a round-robin ping-pong tournament) came to fruition after many proposals were presented between the three different committees within the council - Events, Finance and Operations, and Communications and Media. The game of ping-pong has been making a comeback within the social scene these past few years and SPiN Toronto has become a popular spot for the young professionals to gather for a night on the town. Those factors combined created a perfect event idea to generate opportunities for networking, bring about awareness regarding the BBBST, and more importantly create the opportunity to bring teams of people together to pledge for donations.

Auction Table 
One major challenge the YL’s faced while organizing Paddle Royale was getting corporate sponsors to come on board and support the event. However, with much persistence and many cold calls later, an impressive $10,000 in sponsorships was gathered; an amazing feat for an inaugural event. Many of the sponsors are what the YL’s call “match sponsors”, a title earned by a donation of $1,500 that essentially covers the cost of pairing a Big Brother/Sister with a Little Brother/Sister. Sponsors also had the option of being a “table sponsor” which allowed the sponsors to put their own ads on the tables, have their own ping-pong table for the night, and have three teams automatically entered into the tournament.

The ladies talk strategy
As the sounds of music from music sponsor Kiss 92.5 and DJ Rouge filled the air, some of the expected 400 guests excitedly started to filter into the large venue. Ping-pong tables sprawled out between two large main rooms, dotted with vases of bright orange ping-pong balls, racquets, and colourful balloons. The registration team handed out glow-in-the-dark bracelets upon entry, which quickly became a favourite accessory amongst the guest’s attire that night.  Sixty-four teams registered to play in the round-robin tournament (which is maximum capacity able to register), bedecked in creative costumes with hopes of winning the “best-dressed” title.  Participants also received a Paddle Royale t-shirt donated by Me to We Style, which is a nice souvenir to take home. For those thirsty competitors, beer sponsor Steam Whistle Brewery provided a complimentary beverage, while liquor sponsor Three Olives Vodka provided some tasty cocktails for guests who just wanted to observe the action. SPiN conjured up an amazing menu for some much needed fuel, which included such treats as brown sugar bacon lollipops, Ontario lamb shoulder sloppy Joes, vegan tacos and the traditional favourite, grilled cheese. Nestled to the left of the action was a large room filled with raffle prizes (all generously donated) adding up to a remarkable $15,000 in value. The most coveted prize of the night was a trip for two to Waikiki donated kindly by Trump Hotels and WestJet, valued at $7,700 dollars. Additional raffle prizes included such things as a Blue Jays Box night which included free food and a box for 12 people, Xbox 360s, an autographed Doug Gilmour jersey and hotel stays at the Mariott, Delta, and Sheraton. A ping-pong table was donated by SPiN for the winners of the tournament which was valued at $3,000. After the final ball was hit, lights were dimmed, the black lights came on, and the glow-in-the-dark party really started. Guests grooved to the sounds of well-known DJs, DJ McKnight and DJ Emperor (from Earmilk.com) and there was free table play for any guests wanting to let out their excess energy.

To market this wonderful event, social media outlets such as Facebook and Twitter were “most effective in spreading the word”, states Boynton.  A website was created, which allowed participants to register for the event and find out additional information about Paddle Royale. Local television station CP24 mentioned the event on their program, while the Canadian Broadcasting Company (CBC) filmed the pop-up ping-pong party that was held outside in front of SPiN weeks before the event to generate hype. Posters were put up in condo buildings and coffee shops as well.

In all, teams alone raised over $30,000 and with sponsorship's of $10,000 and money raised throughout the night, contributions amassed to over $50,000. Being a first year event, Paddle Royale can only get bigger and better from here.  If you’d like to learn more about Big Brothers and Sisters of Toronto please visit their webpage at http://www.bbbst.com. For more information about Paddle Royale please go to http://www.bbbstyoungleaders.ca/.

SPONSORS/SUPPLIERS:

SPiN Toronto: http://toronto.spingalactic.com/
Three Olives: http://www.threeolives.com
Steam Whistle Brewery: http://www.steamwhistle.ca/
Kiss 92.5: http://www.kiss925.com
Me to We Style: http://www.metowestyle.com/
Earmilk: http://www.earmilk.com/
Trump Hotels: http://www.trumphotelcollection.com/
WestJet: http://www.westjet.com
CP24: http://www.cp24.com/
CBC: http://www.cbc.ca/

Thursday, 13 June 2013

Have You Ever Experienced Loss In Your Life?


 Accompanied by "I Miss You" by Avril Lavigne.

 Hello all,

As many of you know, it has been a very tough week for me. I thought I would write a blog about my experience as part of my healing process. Each day is getting better, but my heart is still broken.


Just another day at work
Don't be fooled by the bows
On June 5th, 2013, I had to make the very difficult decision of putting my little girl Maddie (Moo) down to rest after 12 wonderful years. My heart has been aching with pain and sadness ever since. The silence is deafening as I sit here in my apartment. Coming home is something I dread more than enjoy at this moment. It feels almost suffocating being in this space. Everything reminds me of her and all I want to do is hold her and see her again. It is a surreal feeling knowing I will never physically get to see my sweet girl again in this lifetime. The sense of loss has been overwhelming and rather difficult to process. I know in theory Maddie is with me in spirit and I am never alone and that time will heal this pain, however with that said I have never felt so alone before in my life. She has been my constant companion ever since I moved out on my own and I didn't realize until this past week how much her presence helped me feel safe and fulfilled. It seems rather crazy that the death of an animal can produce this much heartache, but she was more than just an animal to me. She was like my child. We were two peas in a pod. We were almost like an old married couple at times! Although Maddie was kind of super crazy and her attitude made her infamous around any neighbourhood we moved to, it's that attitude that made me love her even more. Everyone remembered who my crazy little fur ball was after meeting her only once. Perhaps that isn't something to brag about, but I don't care. She had a big personality and I loved her for that. It didn't matter that people questioned why I kept such a crazy dog. I would do anything for her. I learned to love unconditionally, and having her in my life made me realize that I AM able to connect with another being with all my heart. She was my mirror in a lot of ways as she too had issues fully trusting others, was very independent, had a crazy sex drive, and had her emotional highs and lows. She was my barometer for how anxious I was or how much negativity I was carrying around that day - which was generally displayed by vicious growls at my face. Yes it was the right thing to do to assist her in leaving this earth, as the quality of her life was dwindling, but that doesn't make it hurt any less. I miss her everyday.

This loss made me truly empathize more than ever, with people who have lost children, parents, relatives, and companions they've held dear to their hearts. It is a pain that is inevitable in life. I too have had people and animals close to me pass away, however it never felt quite like this. It is the cycle of life and the reason we need to cherish each other, our animals, and our planet every day. We need to soak their souls in, their uniqueness, their faults and shining moments, and take care of each other the best we can.

What I Love and will miss most about my Moo Moo...

I will miss seeing her squeeze her little face through the bathroom door everyday to pay a visit.
I will miss having her wander into my office and nudge my hand to pet her. 

Scared of the thunder
I will miss hearing the pitter patter of her feet following me around the apartment.
I will miss her sleeping by my bedroom door, making me feel protected.
I will miss feeling her fur.
I will miss hearing her hump her stuffed alligator and drag it across the floor over and over again.
I will miss taking her for walks and seeing her bright coat shine in the sun. 

I will miss seeing her lie under the glass table while I eat...peering up expectantly.
I will miss feeling her wet nose on my hand or face.
I will miss her scent and her beautiful brown eyes staring up at me.
I will miss her waking me up every morning after I've hit the snooze button for the third time so she could eat her scrumptious food. 


I will miss having to explain to people every walk I go on, this:

Me: "No no don't try and pet her. She's not very nice."*
Them: Yah right. She's so cute *proceeds to bend down to pet her and cute Moo turns into rabid Moo*

End scene.
All groomed and ready to mingle

I will miss seeing her tap dancing away for her treats. 
I will miss seeing her prance across the floor. 
I will miss cuddling with her on the floor.
I will miss seeing her run after her squeaky "wooleys".
I will miss hearing her eat her crunchy dog food. She had no manners.
I will miss seeing her chase squirrels and hearing her bark at everything under the sun.

I will miss how we sometimes share the same menstrual cycle! Imagine how the house was then!
I will miss her crazy growl and her low manly bark.
I will miss her cuddling up to me when thunderstorms roll in and the smoke alarm goes off.
I will miss seeing her make a bed out of anything that is on the floor.
I will miss hearing her sing to my dad's trumpet.
I will miss seeing her sleep and looking so peaceful.
I will miss her making me laugh with her craziness.
I will miss my TV watching companion. 

Her lover of 12 years - Ali

I will miss seeing her bark at dogs on the TV.
I will miss her unimpressed glares at me and anyone else she came into contact with.
I will miss hearing her waiting excitedly by the door when I get home from work.
I will miss her sleeping under my bed when she gets scared of the loud noises outside.
I will miss hearing her snore.
I will miss seeing her run after the crazy Canadian geese or other birds.
I will miss seeing her looking so happy with the wind blowing in her face while we go on our car rides.

I will miss our lazy afternoons watching movies. 

I will never forget my little one and hope she is stirring up some trouble up above. I will love you forever Madster. 


"I know.  I'm beautiful."

Love,
Lovely Lianne xoxo